Trainer Kim Bailey has high hopes for Denman Chase contender Imperial Aura despite nine-year-old failing to finish his last four races
- Imperial Aura was seen as one of British jump racing’s new star acts
- He has been given extra jumping tuition by eventing star Laura Collett
- Paul Nicholls runs Clan Des Obeaux in the Denman Chase at Newbury
Trainer Kim Bailey says his Denman Chase contender Imperial Aura is undiminished despite the nine-year-old failing to finish his last four races.
At the start of last year Imperial Aura was seen as one of British jump racing’s new star acts. But since then he unseated David Bass at the second fence at Kempton and was pulled up behind the brilliant Allaho in the Ryanair Chase at Cheltenham.
In November Bass’s mount fell at the 13th fence in the Betfair Chase at Haydock before running a lifeless race when pulled up with more than a circuit to go in the Many Clouds Chase at Aintree.
At the start of last year Imperial Aura was seen as one of British jump racing’s new star acts
Bailey said: ‘I am not too sure what happened at Haydock, I think it was slightly jockey error. You can forget Aintree because he had a dirty scope and was sick after the race.’
Imperial Aura has been given extra jumping tuition by Laura Collett, part of the team who won Three-Day eventing gold at Toyko 2020. Bailey added: ‘He has been with Laura twice in the past 10 days and has been brilliant. The racecourse is what proves you right or wrong but I am looking forward to seeing him run.’
Imperial Aura and Royal Pagaille are the only two in the Denman Chase to hold a Cheltenham Gold Cup entry.
Paul Nicholls runs Clan Des Obeaux in the Denman Chase at Newbury as well as his leading Festival hope Bravemansgame in the opening novices’ handicap chase and Knappers Hill in the Betfair Hurdle. They are among his first runners since Sunday as he sought a reason for a recent drop in the form at his stable.